macbook pro SSD installation question

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by skyrider1, Jun 28, 2012.

  1. skyrider1, Jun 28, 2012
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2012

    skyrider1 macrumors newbie

    Jun 28, 2012
    I've decided to upgrade my macbook with an SSD and decided not to go with the 2 drive route, just 1 drive. I just have a few questions about installation.

    1. Since I have to remove my current HD to install the SSD, how would I go about reformatting it if I need to?

    2. Also, if I install the SSD I believe I have 3 options. 1st, Install the OS with a CD, then reinstall apps. 2nd, Install OS, restore from timemachine (this will give me all apps back right?). 3rd, carbon copy it all.

    One of my concerns is with applications that give you a limited amount of installs, like microsoft. How does that work?
  2. skyrider1 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jun 28, 2012
  3. iNewbie macrumors regular

    Aug 25, 2006
    How old is your mac? I just reformatted my 2010 by doing a command-R on boot. it download Lion from the interent I believe, but it worked like a charm. I would think when you replace the drive you could do the same thing.
  4. skyrider1 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jun 28, 2012
    Thanks, I guess that solves my question about formatting it. I have an older mid 2009 model.

    Now I just need to figure out what way best suits me to get all of my stuff on the SSD. My main concern still being the apps that have limited installs. I would think a clone or a time machine restore would not do anything but I am assuming doing a clean install would use up another install?
  5. kevink2 macrumors 65816

    Nov 2, 2008
    For Office 2011, cloning my hard drive counted as a big enough change to force reactivation. Which failed for me because earlier this year after hard drive corruption I had to reinstall. I need to call support at some point to get it resolved, until then I'm using Libreoffice.
  6. BeeJee macrumors 6502

    Nov 27, 2011
    Long Island/North Jersey
    Use carbon copy cloner. I used this to transfer all my files with ZERO problems. Awesome free program that is a godsend for situations like this
  7. skyrider1, Jun 29, 2012
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2012

    skyrider1 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jun 28, 2012
    I'm curious why people use other programs? Can I just follow this video?

    In the end, I might just install the OS, then timemachine restore it as the last time I had to do that (after my old HD died) I didn't need to reactivate some programs.

    EDIT:I hear some people say that it is better to not do a clone as it also transfers a lot of unused files that never got deleted when apps were deleted etc.

    My question is does a time machine restore do the same thing?

    I wanted to do a time restore because it worked so easily before and I'm afraid if I do a clean install things like microsoft word would require the key. I no longer have the cd or the key anymore. However, I'd prefer to transfer apps and things I need and not those hidden files I can't find to clean up.
  8. proximo, Jun 29, 2012
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2012

    proximo macrumors member

    Aug 28, 2011
    Be careful with this advice. Cloning with CCC will not clone the Recovery HD partition to the target drive. You have to manually restore it:

    You can boot and run Lion without the Recovery HD partition on a CCC cloned disk but if you ever need to run Disk Utility to repair the boot drive, do an Internet recovery from a pre-2010 Mac (2010+ have firmware support available for this) or restore from a Time Machine backup you'll be screwed without it.
  9. skyrider1 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jun 28, 2012
    Alright this cloning stuff is getting a little more complicated. Here is what I want to do. I am going to replace the HD with an SSD. I have heard that doing a complete clone can cause alignment issues? I also would rather do a more clean install so I don't transfer things I don't want; however, I do want most things to be the same (apps etc.) And my main concern is programs that require a key. Here is my plan though.

    1. I plug the new SSD into my laptop now (using a sata to usb) so that I can reformat it for mac OS using disk utilities.

    2. Replace the HD with the SSD.

    3. Boot it up with the OS disc and run through that.

    4. There is also an APPs disc which I assume install all of the apps a normal mac comes with.

    At this step I believe I have a mac as it would come new from a store?

    5. From here I start up the computer and choose to restore from a time machine back up.

    Here is where I'm not sure what I want to do. A time machine full restore would basically make it like my comp now which is good. Except I wanted a cleaner install and was thinking maybe migrant assistant might work better. So my questions are:

    Would migrant assistant work well if I want to transfer basically everything but not small hidden or hard to find files I don't need anymore?

    Would a full time machine restore cause these alignment issues I hear people talking about?
  10. proximo, Jun 29, 2012
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2012

    proximo macrumors member

    Aug 28, 2011
    If you use Disk Utility to partition your SSD, it ensures proper alignment.

    If you do a clean install, the install uses Disk Utility to partition the SSD so there are no alignment issues. You'll need to reinstall your apps/data and re-apply any settings. The Recovery HD partition is created.

    If you use CCC to clone your boot drive to an SSD, it requires you use Disk Utility first to partition it so there are no alignment issues. All your apps and data, whether desired or not will be there. The Recovery HD will not be there without manual intervention.

    A Time Machine restore via Recovery HD puts everything back the way it was at the last backup. It will not restore the Recovery HD. You need to do a clean install first:

    Running Migration Assistant after a clean install will restore your apps and settings. I'm not sure about any user data.

    If you find this confusing, the safest thing to do is a clean install, then run Migration Assistant followed by manually copying over any user data that might have been missed. A CCC clone with manual re-creation of the Recovery HD works as well but won't deal with any of the cruft you want to leave behind.
  11. skyrider1, Jun 29, 2012
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2012

    skyrider1 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jun 28, 2012
    Thanks, that was very helpful. So I think I am starting to get it (still just google and researching). I just wanted to go over what I think you said in that last bit just to make sure I understand. I also have a few questions.

    1. reformat SSD first

    Do I need to do some type of firmware update to the SSD at this point?

    2.Physically install SSD.

    3. Start up comp with OS installation CD + also do the APPs CD

    4. Use migrant assistant for APPs that I downloaded myself (microsoft, video players etc.)

    5. Transfer other files I need.

    I believe this will result in a clean install with all the apps, folders, recovery HD I want without any junk.

    I also believe I need to do some PRAM resetting, I have no idea what this is but I read about it somewhere. Then I think I also can turn off the motion sensor for the harddrive since I am now using a SSD.

    If this sounds good, this will be my plan of attack.

    If for some reason this doesn't work out. I'll go up to step 3 above and just restore from time machine. And I think this will create the recovery HD and restore all myself (but with some of that junk I don't want).
  12. Alucidnation macrumors newbie

    Jun 29, 2012
    Dont use Disk utility to clone your HDD.

    I used this and it did not copy the ACL files across.

    Plus the fact my new Samsung SSD is faulty.

    I ended up doing a clean install on the SSD via usb.

    Then, i used TM to reinstall any stuff i wanted back on.

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